LA to SF on Highway 1
My boyfriend and I will be driving from LA to SF up highway 1 for the first time in late July. We will spend about 4 days on the road....any "must stops" along the way? We love to eat,but lean towards vegetarianism. I'd also love to hear where (what towns)you'd spend the nights--romantic and rustic (even camping!) please!
You'll get some good info for tracking down the good chow if you read the sticky at the top of the Calif board. It outlines the various territories that each of the different Calif board covers. (you will need to post on 3 boards to cover this LA to SF run)
That said, you might also want to brush up on this often-covered topic by searching (at the top of the Calif board)"101 LA to SF" . You will find some outstanding threads existing already. Check them out, get some ideas of where you might be stopping, and then re-post with some rather more specific questions. Kids? Pets? Price range? etc.
You can also just search (again, at the top of the Calif board) a town name, say 'Santa Ynez' and see what pops up. That way, if you're not familiar, you might find that Santa Ynez is a popular wine-tasting area. Or 'San Luis Obispo', and find out about the Thurs night Farmer's Market & Street Fair. Maybe grab a map and see where you'd like to stop. Or whether you can rearrange your schedule to accomodate something that sounds too good to miss.
Although it is not in the realm of Chowhound to discuss lodging, you might find some info on any of the commercial sites about the central coast. Just use your web browser to search 'central coast' and you'll find several. Or 'Camping Central Coast.'
Good luck, remember that the fog rolls in every late afternoon, so bring layers. Make that in spades for SF. There's a reason so many tourists are walking around in SF sweathirts.
A detour up Main Street in Old Town Ventura is worthy of an lunch time eating break. Paso Robles has become a real dining destination of late - lots to choose from if you search this group. A good way to break through the wait, the prices and the amounts in Pismo Beach McClintocks is to order at the bar, no meat for you, but their cheesy potato skillet might work and is delicious and the bar down home and funky.
Hiway 1 reopened to through traffic on 7/13. Locals are still cleaning up, and there is still fire traffic on the roads, so drive slowly and cautiously.
All businesses are reported open and anxoius for travelers. Buy a t shirt at the fire dep't.
In the Big Sur area:
Nepenthe for lunch and
The Post Ranch for drinks (dinner would be great there, but it's on the mortgage-your-house side of pricey) and back across the street to
Cielo at Ventana Inn. That is, if any of them are open right now.
You must, must try Nepenthe in Big Sur---the views are phenomenal and I think they have lots of vegetarian options. It was almost lost in the fire and I was very upset---but it made it and they are eager for visitors.